In approximately 60% of sporadic meningiomas, the tumour suppressor gene NF2, located on chromosome 22q, is inactivated. Mutations in the NF2 gene have been specifically reported in transitional and fibrous, but not meningothelial, meningiomas. Since meningothelial meningiomas frequently occur in anterior parts of the skull base, the association between tumour localization, size, histological subtype and NF2 status was investigated in a group of 42 sporadic meningiomas. NF2 status was determined by LOH analysis, karyotyping and FISH. Tumour size and site were evaluated by CT scans and MRIs. A strong correlation between tumour localization in the anterior skull base and intact 22q was revealed (p=0.003). On the other hand, tumour localization at the convexity was associated with disruption of NF2 (p=0.023). Furthermore, an association between chromosome 22 status and histological subtype was observed: abnormalities of chromosome 22q were more frequent in transitional and fibrous meningiomas than in the meningothelial variant (p<0.001). Also, the meningothelial meningiomas were more often located in the anterior skull base (p<0.006). Based on these findings, it is concluded that an alternative histogenesis and genetic pathway is likely to exist for meningiomas arising in the anterior skull base.
Copyright 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.